The Remote Wonder
from ATI is a radio frequency (RF) PC remote control that allows you to control the AV capabilities of your PC without a keyboard or mouse. This is first generation technology and while it shows a lot of promise, there are a few bugs that need to be ironed out.
The Remote Wonder
is optimized to work with ATI’s line of video cards, which come with the ATI Multimedia Center software. For this review, I decided to see what kind of value this remote adds for those who have chosen a non-ATI solution.
Installing the device is fairly straight forward, you first install the software and then plug in the RF receiver into an available USB slot and you’re good to go. The range on the remote is pretty good as well. I was able to use the remote from about 15 feet away and in the other room so range is not really an issue. This could be a possible source of mischief if you were to install the device on a friend’s computer and then manipulate it remotely but I don’t think that is something that ATI had in mind when they created this though.
The remote is about the size of your standard TV remote (2.5 inches wide by 2.5 inches wide and a half inch deep). It has 42 buttons, (6 programmable buttons and 36 pre-programmed buttons), and is pretty ergo-licious with the primary focus of the remote being the thumb pad.
Close-up of where your thumb spends most of it's time with the remote
There are controls for the left and right mouse buttons on either side of the thumb pad with volume control, muting, and channel controls directly below the thumb pad. Mode selection buttons (TV, DVD, Web) are above the thumb pad along with a media library and a drag buttons (a necessity with a non-trackball/mouse pointing device). Rounding out the mouse is a set of numeric buttons, four other programmable buttons, a set of directional buttons, a maximize/restore button, and a set of media controls (play, rewind, fast forward, etc).
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